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And if. It's true that a negro who thinks it is then the problem of America standing up and living up to the bright promises of the Declaration of Independence who is your friend your American thing. There was no theme in our life that is not a theme of American might because the Negro is a market to complete the oppressor Benjamin world. To distinguish an underling Tory and a negro he's actually getting nothing but I do groups of the dynamic schools in a series of talks. I'm a Negro American national national past over the town surveyed by simply saying that the master slave relationship in the great cities was quite weak stance where we get slave hire is hiring in south there's where we get slave purchase. There's where we move into a free and right the slave in the town not Richard Wade at the University of Chicago bought out a recent tremendous new book in the field. Slavery in the city in which he shows how different
slavery was into cities now is declining because you actually didn't need slavery nearly as much and therefore you get to town and slave active virtually as a free man. Many of them as I said hire their own. Time. Slavery in the town. Different greatly from slavery in the plantation area. Hence many negroes in the towns where slavery was a weak institution and constantly to crime when it was taking a tremendous spirit in the plantations slave or the town tended to weaken some of them. In cities like New Orleans so bad that a law where the master slave relationship gradually with many slaves were permitted to hire their own time. Frederick Douglass was one of the Lunsford main negro Narcanon approaches his own freedom the great lot. Carrie you went to Liberia as a missionary any of us were Baptists would not allow Jerry missionaries but Jerry purchased his own freedom in cities where
the master slave relationship was weak where there was really no need for slaves in the southern cities they have a slave permitted to hire his own time could save money if his master agreed his master had to agree because if anything the slave on the master and you had to have a decent man to do this and sometimes you had to work through an intermediary and trust that he would be decent too. But if the math like John McConnell McDonogh in New Orleans who permitted everyone of his slaves to work out that there were any number of instances of slaves who worked out that way. Purchased our freedom agenda as I say this was a it was an urban phenomenon and it had to be with the Masters for consent. Let me come down to state discontent. How did it mean to be a slave. This is a tremendous question because of course the slaves left no records except the fugitive slaves a great fugitive say but what did it mean to be one of the nearly four million slaves on the great deal
depended upon the mass of place you worked at the type but what Jimmy did it mean to be a strain. Now this is a very difficult question to try to give an opinion about and I simply mention that the car in recent years there has been a fascinating theory which was prompted by them in our. In the famous Arkansas just within the last 10 to 12 years. August points out that the tsunami had to act a certain way it had to be cringing you had the warning you had to adopt a mask of humility. He had to get along with the master. He had to in effect become a family. He had to act this way because he was in the position of subservience and because he lived in a state of terror as Arkan he had to act a certain way. Now how the darkness reached that he may have acted his way out in their prom makes an analogy with the Jews. And those he
knows because this is reason that the Jews are the Nazis when they were in the concentration camp. They adopted a certain pattern of behavior a certain pattern of behavior toward their master. And therefore he says fire in our city. Perhaps the strain adopted the same pattern to our newsman. Perhaps because he was required to adopt the mask of civility and a man of humility and. Perhaps. Set out in here to analyze this perhaps the SAM BAHOUR became a true sample and instead of acting it out he became this you think he became a Sam this is a tremendous new perspective. Douglas Lane and having to act a certain way that he was congenitally in Syria that his master was always right that he was childlike that he was submissive that he was borrowing or scraping getting internalized and did acting become a
true fan of the great question which Arkan's rape was the mark of oppression. So great that he became the face that he was forced to act like this is a tremendous question. Now a number of persons who challenge and said that there were no Sambo stereotype the sample did not exist. They point out that you cannot make an analogy with the Nazis because the survey with Ananth that the Jews were exterminated they were not of Africa. You needed the space in straight every There was much more permissive. They could purchase freedom you have holidays. Yeah we are. He was an economic asset. He lived in a market where you had these principles of the Declaration of Independence. Strange that a number of things they ran away they say these predicts about a market society was so much different from the society that the Nazis created for the Jews that you cannot make in America and they pointed to the fact that in the civil war over a hundred thousand dollars
are going to where you are even they make very good soldiers. Now if they were a Sambo type How do they distinguish themselves. There are seven star will say to critics about how could they have distinguished themselves as warriors in the civil war. But the Alkatiri is a fascinating theory and one has many duties. Its fascinating to read history and we did the negro become in actuality the Sambo that he was forced to back plain become internalised into an actual sample what ARCA says is that a negro or a slave who was farming cringing who acted submissively to whom the master was always right who always was obedient was cheerful who was not a troublemaker who acted precisely the rule. That a slave was supposed to act in the eyes of his master. This is a Sambo person out of the South indeed a fine example prisoner he says because the slave lived in
a state of fear and terror. The use of these words he became the sort of pain that is mad to run into a serve our cringing image and this is what Arkan sets up and stamp it out as many had to act like this is true. Another great question out is raising did he become like this. There's a young There's a scar a man named Barker has just brought a book out of its car negro higher education from 69 to the present day down at Prairie View University and he takes this attack the alchemy point of view. He points out that abound in slavery there were many progressive things that a slave could do and that you cannot make an analogy and the young scholars co-opted knocked around it. Who attacked this theory but I mention the artist theory because it's a fascinating thing the psychology of the slaves as well that you hear a great deal about and particularly in dealing with people that are oppressed.
Is this marker of oppression is this trying to be is me tomorrow so deep. Those of us who teach you nothing is the alienation so big that this thing becomes internalized and the person becomes the brain that has over our master wanted him to become and this becomes a question in psychology which some of us are better able to handle it with just one of the other ways that the arc of the challenge when we noticed a discontent and this is a matter of record as you say. Not a flame not having a stake in the yard. Our work. Done and despair was done badly and slavery had no incentive. Saw that one of the ways in which the slaves struck back and there were many ways is this matter of producing as little as he could humanely produce so the slaves were notoriously slow producing the masses raw always complain. They generally sold it as much as they could without in courage and punishment. They generally
pretended that new instruments they didn't know how to use and they are down. This was very common in a society where you are right. The very smallest dangerous to know too much in this way got in the habit of knowing very little and when you had some new way to do a thing of some new too he pretended to be that this was just too advanced for him. Feigning illness was very customary in fact feigning pregnancy was common but you wonder this can't you know go on forever. But then slowing down to see this play was very destructive. They had in fact they had to make special to do so Carnegie Hall made especially for Negroes alone because they tended to break the two backs they had to put their names on to because strange strange conduct this concealed aggression of the day to day resistance. Southern Masters had to pay exorbitant prices for fire insurance you could not get fire insurance in the Southwest plane one of the crimes of which 11 crimes which is slave is
punishable by death. Awful awful is a very common we don't leave them out of the record this is the way the main struck back so that Franklin and others who pray slavery the day to day resist How can you resent it without incurring the whip without incurring being salt of the lower south. This was the way in which we have to gain from measure of whether the slave became a Sambo person out in the plantation records indicate very clearly the kind of sabotage as we would call it a day that the slave exposed himself the slave was in this sense not on the Cross there are more direct ways the matter of flight and there were individual flights of course where you follow the North Star and trusted to luck. And then there was the agency called the Underground Railroad in which people would help you from one station to another until you got about the Ohio and then until you got to Cannes
the greatest of the underground railroad operators havea Taubman who made many trips into the south and she looked so much like a slave that she was able never to be captured but you get flight individual and then you get on the Underground Railroad. Range. Now we go into conspiracies. Habitat because that where the some 250 vote are conspiracies which of course the greatest as Nat Turner insurrection in 1831 in which nearly 60 whites were killed and now 19 of his followers were put to death so that we meet revivals and conspiracy. We have been listening to Professor Benjamin while speaking on the Negro American. The series of broadcast was produced for a station w DTI by the Department of Education or broadcasting for the Detroit Public Schools executive producer Frederick E. show's
technical direction Clifford where. This program was distributed by the national educational radio network.
The negro American
The Life of the Slave, Part II
Producing Organization
Detroit Public Schools
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University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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For series info, see Item 3536. This prog.: The Life of the Slave, Part II
Race and Ethnicity
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Producing Organization: WDTR
Producing Organization: Detroit Public Schools
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University of Maryland
Identifier: 68-30-7 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:12:43
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Chicago: “The negro American; The Life of the Slave, Part II,” 1968-10-22, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed July 13, 2024,
MLA: “The negro American; The Life of the Slave, Part II.” 1968-10-22. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. July 13, 2024. <>.
APA: The negro American; The Life of the Slave, Part II. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from